Shaun Buck | [Top Agency Series] How to Retain Your Clients
Shaun Buck
Smart Business Revolution

Shaun Buck is the Founder and CEO of The Newsletter Pro, based out of Boise, Idaho. He has grown the company into the nation’s largest custom print newsletter company, printing and mailing millions of newsletters annually for diverse industries spread across four countries. 

In 2015, Shaun and The Newsletter Pro landed at number 120 on the Inc. 500 Fastest Growing Companies list with a growth rate of 2,975%. He is the author of the book The Ultimate Guide To Newsletters: Your Secret Weapon for Doubling Referrals and Tripling Retention. 

In this episode of the Smart Business Revolution Podcast, John Corcoran and Dr. Jeremy Weisz, Co-founders of Rise25, are joined by Shaun Buck, the Founder and CEO of The Newsletter Pro, to discuss different strategies for attracting and retaining clients. Shaun also talks about his newsletter, tips for nurturing prospects, and the benefits of working with experts.

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Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Hear:

  • The types of clients Shaun Buck works with — and some of the big changes his company experienced over the last year
  • Why people should use facts to do business instead of relying on gut feelings
  • Shaun’s client retention strategies and his advice on entertaining people through a newsletter
  • How businesses can start nurturing prospects
  • The value of hiring and working with experts
  • How Shaun adapted his marketing strategies following the pandemic 
  • The people Shaun respects and learns from
  • Where to learn more and get in touch with Shaun Buck

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

Sponsor: Rise25

At Rise25, we’re committed to helping you connect with your Dream 100 referral partners, clients, and strategic partners through our done-for-you podcast solution. 

We’re a professional podcast production agency that makes creating a podcast effortless. Since 2009, our proven system has helped thousands of B2B businesses build strong relationships with referral partners, clients, and audiences without doing the hard work.

What do you need to start a podcast?

When you use our proven system, all you need is an idea and a voice. We handle the strategy, production, and distribution – you just need to show up and talk.

The Rise25 podcasting solution is designed to help you build a profitable podcast. This requires a specific strategy, and we’ve got that down pat. We focus on making sure you have a direct path to ROI, which is the most important component. Plus, our podcast production company takes any heavy lifting of production and distribution off your plate.

We make distribution easy

We’ll distribute each episode across more than 11 unique channels, including iTunes, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. We’ll also create copy for each episode and promote your show across social media.

Cofounders Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran credit podcasting as being the best thing they have ever done for their businesses. Podcasting connected them with the founders/CEOs of P90xAtariEinstein BagelsMattelRx BarsYPO, EO, Lending Tree, Freshdesk,  and many more.  

The relationships you form through podcasting run deep. Jeremy and John became business partners through podcasting. They have even gone on family vacations and attended weddings of guests who have been on the podcast.

Podcast production has a lot of moving parts and is a big commitment on our end; we only want to work with people who are committed to their business and to cultivating amazing relationships.

Are you considering launching a podcast to acquire partnerships, clients, and referrals? Would you like to work with a podcast agency that wants you to win? 

Contact us now at [email protected] or book a call at

Rise25 Cofounders, Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran, have been podcasting and advising about podcasting since 2008.

Episode Transcript

Intro 0:01 

Welcome to the revolution, the Smart Business Revolution Podcast where we ask today’s most successful entrepreneurs to share the tools and strategies they use to build relationships and connections to grow their revenue. Now, your host for the revolution, John Corcoran.

John Corcoran 0:40

All right, welcome everybody. John Corcoran here. I am the host of the Smart Business Revolution Podcast. This is a live episode, going to be streaming it live on LinkedIn. And we’re also going to put the recording up on Smart Business Revolution Podcast, also on Inspired Insider. Dr. Weisz, good morning.

Jeremy Weisz 0:57

Thanks for having me. This will be on Inspired Insider.

John Corcoran 1:00

Right. And so, you know, I feel so privileged because every week I get, on my show twice a week actually, get to talk to really smart CEOs, founders, and entrepreneurs. I had the co-founder of Netflix on a while back, YPO, EO, Activision Blizzard, Lending Tree. So many great founders and CEOs that I’ve talked to. Go check out the backlog, the back catalog, because there’s some great episodes in there, and today is no exception. I also am the Co-founder of Rise25, where we help connect b2b business owners to their ideal prospects. And today’s guest is Shaun Buck. He’s the CEO and Founder of The Newsletter Pro, has been a friend for quite some time, we are a customer of his, and we’re gonna be talking about the best way to grow top line revenue, maximize sales. So we’re going to be talking about nurture campaigns, how to nurture prospects, so leads into sales, how to nurture clients that leads to greater retention, leads, upsells, and referrals, all important issues, so be sure to pay attention because we’re going to dive into that. And he knows a lot about this topic. Before we get to that, of course, this episode is brought to you by Rise25, where we help b2b business owners to get clients, referrals and strategic partnerships, using our own special magic, which is done for you podcasts and content marketing. And if you’re listening to this, if you’ve ever been curious about starting a podcast and getting to talk to smart people every week, shoot us an email at [email protected] or go to, we’ll be happy to tell you about how it works. 

Alright, so Shaun, so excited to have you back here. Again, we’ve interviewed you before. But you know, this is a unique period of time, right now we’re recording this in May of 2021, we’re a year into this global pandemic that’s just really ended. So much commerce and businesses, and you’re in a unique position where you really have your finger on the pulse, you have so many different customers. And you’ve seen how they’ve been affected by this pandemic. So how do you feel, what sorts of changes have you seen taking place over the last year?

Shaun Buck 2:59

Well, you know, it’s, it’s interesting, um, you know, I think when this hit, because it was all so fresh, no one, no one had seen it in 100 years, right. No one knew what to do at first from a business standpoint, and it almost felt like businesses just kind of went in their own direction, right? Like that was whatever it was, it was just there, like, Hey, we’re gonna just scatter, and everyone just tried to figure it out. And, actually, an interesting, interesting thing happened was that when it didn’t end very quickly, a lot of gurus saw a huge increase in business, they saw an immediate fall off and a huge increase in business, as people looked for answers. What should they do? How do they solve this problem? How do they stay? How do they grow? How do they, you know, how do they survive, depending on what part of the pandemic we were talking about? You know, and what’s next. Right? And so, as you said, Now, here we are a year later. And, you know, the funny thing is, a lot has happened, a lot is coming up, it’s gonna be a real, real interesting year, you know, next 12 months, but, but a lot lots happened. And people went in very different directions. Still, I think it depends on the industry. Look, there were some industries that were winners.

Jeremy Weisz 4:24

I want to show I want you to, to kind of elaborate on that. And I’m wondering, you know, what type of clients do you serve, and then talk a little bit because I’m sure every industry is affected a little bit differently. So the types of clients you serve, and then what you saw happen with each of them?

Shaun Buck 4:41

Well, the types of clients we serve a lot of more professional services, doctors, lawyers, chiropractors, you know, that kind of thing, right. We also service a number of kinds of small businesses, small businesses that are either service based or have some level of repeat business, or really high ticket, you know, those are our Main industries, of course, we have outliers like everybody else. But you know, what we saw a person, what we saw initially, was just a panic from everybody. And that and actually most people made the one of the worst decisions they can make, which was a lot, or a lot of people did was that they paused or stopped all marketing. Now when you’re closed, I get it to some extent, right? Makes sense, then makes a little sense then, right? You know, although I could, I could make an argument for making a small adjustment and making sure you’re still communicating, at least on some level. But um, but then we saw something else really interesting happened. A few people came out to be winners. So let’s talk about dentists for example, dentists, they closed, which hurt, but then when they opened, they basically had a couple months worth of a backlog of patients, right, that thing now normally would have done over those last two or three months. And now they had to try to fill them all in, get all caught up, get all the patients who were already scheduled for June or July, or whenever they opened back up, right. And they had them so they were going crazy with business. And so you know, what, a lot of them did, they didn’t do any marketing. Why? Because they were as busy as they could be. Right?

John Corcoran 6:15

It would continue forever.

Shaun Buck 6:17

Well, I mean, yeah, and, and that’s, you know, that is that what we saw was this fear and panic, stop, don’t do a whole lot. Put, you know, put on hold, then we saw some businesses open back up and just be inundated with business, and others open up and just struggle, you know, your bars or nightclubs, not our customers. But you know, I know some people who own a few of those. And, you know, like, it’s like just struggle, struggle, struggle restaurants, some did some didn’t. So what’s going on is that the initial reaction was fear and stopped everything. Okay, then it was open back up. But if we don’t have a lot of business, don’t don’t start right back up on marketing, because we don’t have any business. Right. And if we are flooded with business, don’t do marketing, because we’re flooded with business. Right? And, and now where we’re at, if that’s like in the beginning, into fall, that was what we were seeing, not like for our own personal business, not a lot of new clients coming on for the first four or five months.

Jeremy Weisz 7:25

Shaun, I have a quick question on that for one second. Because, you know, we know that obviously, you want to dig the well before you need it. And how do you advise people when they’re calling to go against their instinct? Because really, what we’re saying is you’re going against your instinct, things are shutting down, you shouldn’t stop, things are great. You shouldn’t stop. How do you convey to them that they should go against their instinct?

Shaun Buck 7:53

Well, it’s not going against your instincts. Okay? Right. So even if your gut tells you, right, just because your gut is telling you to go one way. I mean, we don’t make decisions solely based on what our guts tell us. We look at the facts, we look at the history, we look at how business works, I mean, look, business, a business isn’t that complicated. If you’re willing to review what’s already worked, what hasn’t worked, you know, and put some systems and processes in place and some effort. It’s not that it really isn’t that difficult, but, but if you’re going to just listen to your gut, you’ll just always be small, like it’s just you’re gonna, you’re gonna struggle because you’re gonna make the wrong decision. Because our guts are never 100%. Right, with, you know, that fear fight or flight type of an idea. And so how do we convince them? You know, we, some of it, everyone’s different. So if it’s data driven, right, you know, we’re gonna give them the data, some of it saying, Hey, no, look, think about it. This is the point if you think about some of the biggest companies right now that started in the Great Depression back in the 1930s. Right? And they started there, and they and they grew, my company started during the Great Recession. Right? We had tremendous growth, right during the Great Recession. So what was it It wasn’t because we were holding back, it’s because when it’s kind of like what Warren Buffett says, when everyone else is being greedy, you know, you should be fearful. So when everyone else is saying we don’t need to market we don’t need to do any of this stuff. We don’t need to have a podcast, we don’t have a newsletter, we don’t need to communicate. we’re so busy. That’s when you should be like holy crap, I better be doing marketing. I bet that’s when you can get great prices on that stuff even though you know some places negotiate right? That’s where maybe you can buy ads at a discount. Facebook was at a discount there for a little bit. Right. You know, right. That’s what and then when people you know, when people are being fearful that’s you know, that’s when your that’s when you’re in buying so right? They’re being greedy, you’re fearful, right? When they’re being fearful. You’re out there buying because that’s where the opportunities are. And so that’s what I would tell you like that’s how it works in the stock market. That’s how it works in business as well too. When I see my competitors going, right They’re all doing it. I’m like, well, that probably sucks, because most of them aren’t that smart. So let’s go over here and look and see what’s over here and probably go do that. Because I bet that makes more sense. And so, you know, I think when you kind of show them the examples, both in their industry out of their industry and other, you know, in the stock market, things like that, you’re like, Look, this is what the smartest people on the planet tell you to go do. So go do it. You’re Oh, right. So that’s, you know, I’m not saying it always works, that

John Corcoran 10:30

talk about and I know you’re a big proponent of retention, keeping your clients happy once you’ve retained them. Let’s talk a little bit about that, particularly in the context of the importance of retention in this economy that we’re in.

Shaun Buck 10:45

Yeah, well, look, right now. Right now, it’s probably, I’d say one of the most important times the some of the most important things you could be doing, regardless of your business right now is, first and foremost, take care of the existing customers, right? Take care of them, make sure they’re great, great communication, provide value, of course, make offers where appropriate, but provide value plus offers. The reason being is that these are the guys who will keep you in business. If stuff goes out, again, if it gets hard again, we’re gonna rely on our existing customers, we’re gonna rely on our existing customers, right? And we’re gonna go do marketing, get new ones, but like we were doing marketing during the pandemic. But new ones were hard to come by. We got some. It was difficult to get though, right? Now we’re getting some dividends from those leads we generated back then. And we’re seeing an increase in sales. But it took a little bit, right. And so what I’m telling you is, go after them, treat them? Well, they’re the ones who pay your bills, right? These are the people who make you who make your money, who keep you open. So take care of them and put your systems and processes in place to maximize what you’ve already got. Now, that means you’ve already got a lead. They didn’t buy today, how do we maximize that lead? Right? How do we make, how do we educate them? entertain them? How do we provide them with enough information to maximize that that lead and so you know, maybe if we get 100 leads and convert five Normally, if we sit there and work on maximizing those leads, and have that efficient system, maybe over the next 12 months, we converted another five of them, right? Well, that’s a really good investment, right? If we then take our existing customers, and we make sure they’re happy, and we decrease the number of cancellations that we get, right? And then maybe we sell them some more, or we get them to buy a new product or service, or whatever it is, right? Okay, that is maximizing what we’ve already got, it is a lot cheaper to do than to go out and get brand new. Right? It’s easier, it’s cheaper, more profitable.